Bob Hicok: “Isn’t physics fun?”


Isn’t physics fun?

The speed of light is a constant
reminder I am slow — like what the square root
of patience is I couldn’t tell you — and light bends
better than I, having no knees, no bones
to get in the way of the flesh it also
hath not — excuse the poetic lisp
of hath — I’m feeling archaic and blessed
that as a poet, I get to watch dust
meander through light and fall
wherever it falls for a living– I never dust,
it feels like murder somehow —
of what was wanted by gravity and chance —
because how do I know those aren’t my parents,
gravity and chance — I’ve taken my parent’s word
as proof they are my parents — what
a horrible scientist I have been
though a good son — and really, even if they are
my parents, what kind of knowing is that —
for who were their parents and so on
all the way back — eventually we get to light,
don’t we — so when someone asks, where
do you come from — I turn a flashlight
on and off — or take out the bit of star
I carry in my wallet — and call it mom

Bob HicokBob Hicok‘s recent books include Elegy Owed, Words for Empty and Words for Full and This Clumsy Living.



Find contributing writer Diana Khoi Nguyen’s recent interview with Bob Hicok online.

Additional work from Bob Hicok appears most recently in the Summer & Fall 2014 print issue of Poetry Northwest, and online here.

photo credit: ludwig van standard lamp via photopin cc